WHEN: On display April 1-26; Meet the Artists Reception, Sunday, April 1, 1-3 PM
WHERE: Waltuch Gallery of the Kaplen JCC on the Palisades, 411 East Clinton Avenue, Tenafly
The exhibit, planned to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II, was created by Dr. Wilma Bulkin Siegel, who has painted and narrated the lives of 58 Holocaust survivors (24 will be on display in the current exhibition). Looking to examine the conflicts and lessons of the Nazi era, Dr. Siegel has woven together an extraordinary album that documents the lives of people who survived unfathomable events. Each portrait is a beautiful and haunting masterpiece, and viewed together, they serve as a “living” memorial that honors their collective memory, and the memory of all others who have been impacted by the Holocaust.
“Upon the liberation of the concentrations camps in 1945, the movie theaters were showing pictures of the horrors that took place within them, and my father insisted that I go to see them,” say Dr. Siegel. “I was about eight years old. Horrified, I turned to my father and asked, Why could I have not done something about this? So, you see, in contemplating why I did this series, I am playing out my guilt and trying to do something about the terrible problem of bigotry in our world. Hopefully, these remarkable people can help all of us think about our purpose in this world and how we can stamp out bigotry since we are a country of Freedom.”
The portraits also serve as a record of the last of the generation who lived through the Holocaust and are entering the last chapters of their lives. Their stories now live on and their message to the world remains important because they remind us of the vast destruction that can occur if we allow prejudice and bigotry to continue.
Gallery hours are Monday – Thursday, 9 AM – 10 PM; Friday and Sunday, 9 AM – 5 PM; closed Saturday and Jewish holidays. Admission is free and open to the community. For more information contact Rochelle Lazarus at 201.408.1408 or visit the JCC website at www.jccotp.org